NORWAY: Practical or Beautiful?: A French Mother’s Perspective

I remember walking in the street, while pregnant, looking at some young mothers pushing their prams, looking great.  They were made up and wearing cool clothes: the perfect combination of the modern mum and the urban self-confident woman.

I thought to myself ,” Right, I’ll be a pretty mummy.” (It’s funny how I never stopped to consider the other mums around, wearing sweatpants and who had given up on their brush.  Shouldn’t that have given me a hint?)

And then my beautiful baby came … nothing was (is) more important than her well-being.  Who cares what I look like?! Arguments were pouring through my mind:

1) I’m breastfeeding, so I need to be comfortable

2) I am not going to buy more clothes, I’ll just wear my training trousers until I fit into my old clothes again

3) I am getting up at night and going to bed during the day, so no real point of getting out of my PJs…

4) I never go out. Winter in Norway? Minus 18 and 2-meter snow, say no more! (more…)

Travel Itinerary for the Week of January 31st!

We are in for an exciting week featuring two new international writers, so fasten your seatbelts!

We start off this week in Oslo, Norway on Monday, to hear from first-time World Moms Blogger Ambre French, our French Mom who lives in Scandinavia.

On Tuesday, we fly across the pond to New Jersey to spend time with Veronica Samuels, who is preparing for the arrival of her second child.

On Wednesday, we take off for New Zealand to hear from Karyn Van Der Zwet, Mom of three and former teacher, who is also writing for us for the first time.

And on Thursday, we’re back in the United States to connect with Minnesota Mom Galit Breen, world traveler-turned-devoted-Mom.

Be sure to look out for our Friday question at the end of the week, and chime in with comments of your own!

— World Moms Blog

Our World Moms Blog logo was designed by the creative Erica Joyner Designs in Virginia, USA.

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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Friday Question: Last Book Read? Favorite Book?

This week we asked our writers,

What book did you last read? Or, what is your favorite book?

Here’s what they had to say!

Karyn Van Der Zwet of New Zealand states:

“The latest book I’ve read is ‘The Book of Fairy Princes’ by Isabel Wyatt, yes it is a children’s book, and I really like it because it is like an old-fashioned fairy tale book, but the boys are the focus not the girls. As a Mum to three boys – this is important in our house.” (more…)

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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CANADA: Where’s The – Ummmm – Donut Shop?

About a year ago, my laptop died.  For a technogeek like me, this was nothing short of a disaster, and I became a general nuisance around my household.  I would hijack George’s computer, much to his disgust, or I would hover restlessly behind my betrothed’s left shoulder because I wanted him to get off his computer so I could update my Facebook status.  After a few days of this, Gerard got fed up (who can blame the poor man?) and went out to buy me a new laptop.  James, who had just turned four, accompanied him.

From what I’ve been told, the actual shopping part of the trip was uneventful. It was the trip home that got interesting.

It all started when James, from his booster seat in the back, announced that he wanted a donut.  Gerard told him to look out for a donut shop, and for the next few minutes they were bantering back and forth: (more…)

Kirsten Doyle (Canada)

Kirsten Doyle was born in South Africa. After completing university, she drifted for a while and finally washed up in Canada in 2000. She is Mom to two boys who have reached the stage of eating everything in sight (but still remaining skinny). Kirsten was a computer programmer for a while before migrating into I.T. project management. Eventually she tossed in the corporate life entirely in order to be a self-employed writer and editor. When Kirsten is not wrestling with her kids or writing up a storm, she can be seen on Toronto's streets putting many miles onto her running shoes. Every year, she runs a half-marathon to benefit children with autism, inspired by her older son who lives life on the autism spectrum. Final piece of information: Kirsten is lucky enough to be married to the funniest guy in the world. Connect with her on Facebook and on Twitter @running4autism. Be sure to check out her personal blog, Running for Autism!

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NORWAY: Paternity Leave in Norway

In Norway we have a choice between 46 weeks (with 100% pay) or 56 weeks (with 80% pay) parental leave. Six weeks are reserved for the mother, 10 weeks reserved for the father (plus the 2 weeks off they get at the time of the birth), and the rest can be shared. Next year, the fathers 10 weeks will be increased to 12 weeks.

Some fathers, however, feel that they are not able to take this leave, but this very much depends on the type of work he has, e.g. somebody who is paid on commission can hardly afford to take 10 weeks off. Or, for somebody who is running their own company, it might be difficult to take so much time out.

The mother does not have the “luxury” to decide whether or not she can afford to take maternity leave, as she kind of has to take at least some time off, and traditionally it is expected that the takes most of the leave. (more…)

Astrid Warren (Norway)

Astrid is a Norwegian thirty something, married, working mum to a wee lad who is almost three and a baby born in 2012! She grew up in Norway, but moved to London, England after she met her husband. After living there during her twenties, she has since returned to Norway and settled down in her nation's capital of Oslo to raise her family. She finds herself slowly turning into her own mother as her free time is spent reading, walking, knitting and meeting up with other mums for coffee. (Ok, she still secretly loves going to the pub, too!). However, there isn't much time for any of the above, as she now enjoys spending most of her time crawling around on the floor, while playing with her children! Check out her blog, Quintessentially Burrows. She's also on Twitter @MrsSWarren.

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